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Is abstinence-only sex education effective?

Abstinence-only sex-education excludes teaching contraceptives such as condoms and the pill, and purely focuses on abstinence. Its critics claim that it is not only ineffective but socially irresponsible, and furthermore that the only basis for omitting education on contraceptives is to fulfill a moral agenda.

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Experts and Influencers

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Agree
Experts In Politics


Sarah Palin    Former Governor of Alaska (Republican)
Agree
Yes, the explicit sex-ed programs will not find my support. [in answer to the question: Will you support funding for abstinence-until-marriage education instead of for explicit sex-education programs, school-based clinics, and the distribution of contraceptives in schools?]
31 Jul 2006    Source

Sub-Arguments Of This Expert:
Is abortion morally acceptable?
   Disagree

John McCain    U.S. Senator, Republican
Agree
The guy I really respect on this is Dr. Tom Coburn [who believes abstinence only education is effective]. ... I look to people like [him]. I’m not very wise on it.
16 Mar 2007    Source

Sub-Arguments Of This Expert:
Is abortion morally acceptable?
   Mostly Disagree

George W. Bush    United States President 2001-2009
Agree
We will double federal funding for abstinence programs, so schools can teach this fact of life: Abstinence for young people is the only certain way to avoid sexually-transmitted diseases.
20 Jan 2004    Source


Tom Coburn    U.S. Senator
Agree
I know the statistics [about condoms]. They break. They slip. What we've done is not told the whole truth about condoms. ... My position is, if you can get people to use condoms perfectly, and you can make sure they use them, and tell them what the risks are, and tell them the breakage rates and slippage rates are, it's a good strategy. ... I believe that monogamy is the answer to HIV infection. I understand that people think I'm not a realist in this area.
29 Oct 2007    Source


Experts In Christianity


United States Conference of Catholic Bishops    U.S. Branch of Roman Catholic Church
Agree
[It is a myth that] abstinence is unworkable and unrealistic [and that] teens are going to have sex anyway so we need to teach them "safe" sex.
01 Mar 1999    Source

Sub-Arguments Of This Expert:
Do condoms effectively prevent HIV?
   Mostly Disagree

Encyclopedia


Conservapedia    Christian Encyclopedia
Agree
Abstinence denial refers to two phenomena, deliberate denial by liberal and pro-abortion groups of the efficacy of abstinence-only programs in preventing disease, and denial from ignorance by those who have been convinced by the propaganda. ... Liberals claim that abstinence pledge campaigns are ineffective when compaired to programs that involve both abstinence and information about a variety of birth control methods. However, surely numerous studies disprove this.
20 Sep 2009    Source

Sub-Arguments Of This Expert:
Is abortion morally acceptable?
   Disagree

Disagree
Experts In Politics


Barack Obama    United States President
Disagree
If condoms and potentially microbicides can prevent millions of deaths, they should be made more widely available. I know that there are those who, out of sincere religious conviction, oppose such measures. And with these folks, I must respectfully but unequivocally disagree. I do not accept the notion that those who make mistakes in their lives should be given an effective death sentence...
01 Dec 2006    Source


Experts In Health


Christopher Trenholm    Researcher
Barbara Devaney    Researcher
Ken Fortson    Researcher
Lisa Quay    Researcher
Justin Wheeler    Researcher
Melissa Clark    Researcher
Disagree
The impact findings show no overall impact on teen sexual activity, no differences in rates of unprotected sex, and some impacts on knowledge of STDs and perceived effectiveness of condoms and birth control pills.
01 Apr 2007    Source


Ambiguous or Flip-Flop
Miscellaneous Experts


Bristol Palin    Sarah Palin's Daughter
Agree
Regardless of what I did personally, I just think that abstinence is the only way you can effectively, 100% foolproof way you can prevent pregnancy. ... I just want to go out there and promote abstinence and say, this is the safest choice. This is the choice that's going to prevent teen pregnancy and prevent a lot of heartache.
06 May 2009    Source


Bristol Palin    Sarah Palin's Daughter
Disagree
Abstinence [is] not realistic at all.
18 Feb 2009    Source



Comments

Add Your TakeOnIt (click to expand, no login required)
0 Points      blacktrance      10 Feb 2011      Stance on Question: Disagree
Only abstinence is 100% effective, but such advice is of limited use when the goal is to reduce pregnancy overall.


1 Point      Benja      01 Aug 2010      Stance on Question: Disagree
If sex wasn't a ridiculous amount of fun the abstinence-only education strategy wouldn't be a ridiculous amount of bullshit.